4 ways a GoPro can boost your campus profile

2. To increase student engagement, and enhance skills and understanding: Perhaps a no-brainer is the idea that incorporating a cool technology into a course will increase student engagement. But are there any setbacks; and do students actually learn anything?

These are the questions educators at the University of Texas at Tyler set out to answer. Students who took the University’s Materials Science and Manufacturing course—a required course in the mechanical engineering program—often said the course was boring and repetitive. Outside of getting students more engaged in the course, another goal was to “prepare students to present scientific results in a format that goes beyond paper and to an audience that extends beyond their professors and classmates.”

You can read the full case study here, but the conclusion was that while student engagement did increase, students said that GoPro cameras were only useful for specific kinds of reports and feedback—not for every activity and report; an observation the authors feel leads to the conclusion that implementing GoPro cameras into a lab setting requires an instructor’s experience in working with the camera and its capabilities. However, the instructor did perceive that student skill levels and understanding of lab concepts increased.

3. To capture student life on [and off] campus: As institutions continually try to recruit new students and set their campus apart from the competition, promoting student life and activities is a great strategy—especially with a GoPro. Here are a few ways to accomplish this, according to USA Today:

  • To promote your campus’ major athletics, like a football game—“I love using mine at football games because it is easy to carry around and produces high quality photos and videos,” says Melina Sutton, a senior American studies and ethnicity student at University of Southern California to USA Today. “It’s just so much easier to hold compared to a phone when you’re in the middle of it all.”
  • To promote the campus’ physical environment—Have features like lakes, mountains, or beautiful trails nearby? Have students use GoPro cameras to document their experiences.
  • To make a video collage of campus memories—Audrey Lau, a global and international studies student from University of California, Santa Barbara, took to vlogging about her campus memories on YouTube using a GoPro, since she says it gives a unique first-person perspective.
  • To promote campus sponsored events, like concerts, speakers, or any event with a large crowd—“Students with GoPros often want to get that unique footage that can allow them the flexibility to experiment and even make videos that can potentially go viral,” says USA Today.
  • To promote the studying abroad experience—Many students will have their own GoPro cameras as the popularity of this technology increases, so why not use their footage to promote the campus’ study abroad opportunities?

4. To increase your institution’s brand awareness: Last year the Institute for the Study of Knowledge in Education (ISKME) hosted a GoPro contest for educators, asking them to showcase ideas for how GoPro cameras can be used to create educational content. But ISKME is not the only organization hosting GoPro-inspired contests. A quick internet search will provide multiple links to contests featuring the use of a GoPro. Entering your institution, or a student’s work from the institution, in the contest can be one way to promote brand awareness and demonstrate technological innovation.